United States Attorney Josh Minkler announced today Adrian Grisanti, 46, of Louisville, Kentucky, was convicted on Thursday, April 19, 2018, on twenty counts related to child pornography and one count of destroying evidence after a four-day jury trial before U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt in New Albany, Indiana.

Grisanti was a member of a darknet web community that catered in images and videos of child pornography. After the website was discovered by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the FBI was able to identify hundreds of members worldwide, including Grisanti. 

Acting on this information, the FBI executed search warrants at Grisanti’s office and home in August of 2015. After Grisanti’s attempt to conceal his crimes by destroying the hard drive of the computer which was used to obtain the child pornography, the FBI and Indiana State Policebegan a painstaking forensic investigation which ultimately led to the arrest and conviction of Grisanti.

The conviction included eleven counts of receiving child pornography, eight counts of accessing computer files with the intent to view child pornography, one count of possession of child pornography, and one count of destroying evidence.

“Defendants can no longer hide behind the dark web and expect to elude federal law enforcement,” said Minkler. “Those who prey on the most vulnerable of our citizens, the ones who cannot fend for themselves, can expect to be held accountable and face the federal hammer of justice.”

“This verdict demonstrates the FBI’s commitment to investigating cases of child pornography with a sense of urgency to protect children from those who engage in this type of activity,” said Robert Middleton, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Indianapolis Division. “The teamwork between our agents and state law enforcement partners ensured there is one less predator victimizing the most innocent and vulnerable members of our community.”

“There are few things more upsetting than knowing innocent children continue to be victimized by people who engage in such depraved criminal acts,” said Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter. “I’m very grateful to our dedicated detectives and the strong partnership we have with our federal partners that help bring these criminals to justice and remove them from society.”

According to Assistant United States Attorneys Bradley P. Shepard and Steven D. DeBrota, Grisanti faces between 5-20 years in prison on each count of receiving child pornography, up to 10 years in prison on each count of accessing computer files with intent to view child pornography, up to 20 years for possessing child pornography, and up to 10 years for destroying his hard drive.

In October 2017, United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler announced a Strategic Plan designed to shape and strengthen the District’s response to its most significant public safety challenges. This prosecution sentencing demonstrates the office’s firm commitment to detect and prosecute matters involving sexual exploitation of children, (See United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of Indiana Strategic Plan, Section 5.3)